From the Marbles - NASCAR

Clint Bowyer wins Prelude to the DreamClint Bowyer led wire-to-wire to win the 2011 Prelude to the Dream at Eldora Speedway Wednesday night.

This was the seventh year of the Prelude to the Dream, a charity dirt-track race put on by Tony Stewart, who owns Eldora. Bowyer won last year's event too, albeit as a car owner. Jimmie Johnson led every lap in 2010 in a car prepped by Bowyer, who was a successful dirt racer around the midwest before coming to NASCAR.

Bowyer's closest competition was J.J. Yeley, who finished second. Yeley got within a car length of Bowyer but was unable to get any closer in the final laps. Bowyer was driving for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, but the St. Louis Children's Hospital team won the team portion of the event.

The top-five finishing drivers from each team were scored, with the lowest score winning. (First equals one point, while fifth equals five points). The winning team received a 30-percent share of the proceeds, while second received 25 percent and third and fourth received 20 percent. All proceeds from the race, which was broadcast on HBO pay-per-view, went to four children's hospitals.

Johnson, Stewart and Kenny Wallace dropped to the back, hoping to take advantage of a provision that awards a former champion's team an extra $50,000 if they win from the back of the pack. None of the drivers were able to work through the field. Carl Edwards, who said his car owner really wanted to win the event, chose not to take the chance and said he'd donate the $50,000 himself. He finished 15th.

While there were no cone atrocities in this year's Prelude, the racing was confined to the top groove of the race track. When drivers attempted to move to the bottom of the track, they found very little grip, and Kyle Busch might have been the only driver who was able to gain any time on the bottom of the track.

Ryan Newman started on the pole for the event, while Bowyer, Justin Allgaier, Marcos Ambrose and Jason Leffler won the eight-lap heat races before the main event.


1. Clint Bowyer (Children's Healthcare of Atlanta)
2. J.J. Yeley (Children's Medical Center Dallas)
3. Aric Almirola (Dallas)
4. Kyle Busch (St. Louis Children's Hospital)
5. Justin Allgaier (St. Louis)
6. Ricky Carmichael (St. Louis)
7. Ken Schrader (Atlanta)
8. Austin Dillon (Levine Children's Hospital)
9. Ryan Newman (Atlanta)
10. Kasey Kahne (St. Louis)
11. Denny Hamlin( Atlanta)
12. David Reutimann (Atlanta)
13. Matt Kenseth (Dallas)
14. Brian Vickers (Dallas)
15. Carl Edwards (Atlanta)
16. Kenny Wallace (St. Louis)
17. Ron Capps (Atlanta)
18. Jimmie Johnson (Levine)
19. Cruz Pedregon (Levine)
20.Tony Stewart (Dallas)
21. David Gilliland (Atlanta)
22. Bill Elliott (Levine)
23. Bobby Labonte (St. Louis)
24. Marcos Ambrose (Dallas)
25.Ray Evernham (Levine)
26. Ron Hornaday (St. Louis)
27. Tony Kanaan (Dallas)
28. Jason Leffler (Atlanta)

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